For over half a century, the name of Jose Ramirez
is perhaps the most recognized to classical and flamenco guitar aficionados. Ramirez instruments have been performed on by countless professionals from Sting to Segovia, Chet Atkins to Sabicas and Lee Ritenour to Christopher Parkening.
The "Centenario" model represents the 100 year anniversary of guitar making of the Ramírez family. This guitar is made from the workshop's finest materials which they have collected over many, many years. The tops are the 1st pick of the 1st class soundboards. The same goes for the back and sides. As you can see from the photos, there are a lot of extra detailing on this model including a sculpted heel cap, boxwood inlay in the headstock, tapered ebony on the back of the neck, ending in a "rosewood bouquet" on the back of the headstock, as well as extremely intricate wood inlays in the purling and rosette. Although Ramírez states that this guitar is made in exactly the same fashion as the other 1a models, our experience is that these are the best guitars made by the workshop, bar none. Great power, beauty of sound and wonderfully easy to play.
This example, from 1992 is in excellent condition with only minor playing wear. It is also one of the "da camara" models which features a wooden "shelf" attached to the sides of the interior of the guitar, which extends the entire perimeter of the plantilla. The original idea, as developed by Jose Ramirez III, was as a technique to clean the guitar up of any "wolf" tones. Indeed Ramirez was satisfied that the da camara assisted in this effort but also claimed that it enhanced the power and clarity of the instrument. Many players have debated the effects of this element but in the end, everyone agrees that these are great instruments! And we would say this is true of this very fine "Centenario".
For more information on Ramirez, be sure to read The Ramirez Family: Masters of the Guitar
, or for information on the Ramirez family members, from Amalia Ramirez back to Jose I
and for some interesting fact-checking on myths and facts about this legendary workshop